Hi! I'm still going to post more thankful posts, but today I wanted to write about beginning photography. I've been taking pictures since I was 12 years old, but I just started getting more serious about my photography a few years ago and took a class at my alma mater Michigan State University. Instead of shooting in Automatic, I now am using the three settings below that help with my picture taking. Though I must confess, I tend to use Aperture or Shutter Speed priority, instead of just plain Manual (everything manual) still.
The three main settings on a camera are:
ISO - This is the speed of the film. The brighter it is out, the lower the ISO. The darker it is, the higher the ISO. Normally you will try to keep it lower if you can. Sometimes the higher the ISO the more grainy the pictures.
Aperture - This is the opening size of the lens. If you want to have the background fuzzy, use a smaller number. If you want the background in focus, use a larger number. You will also here this called the f/stop. Some lenses come in a wide range of f/stops (ex: 1.8 - 22). Some, not so much. This is not the same as zoom, which is measured in mm (a 200 mm lens for example).
Shutter Speed - This is how fast the lens opens and closes. Examples are 1/125th of a second. The slower the speed, the more light that will come in but the more you will need to not move the camera (perhaps a tripod is needed at speeds slower than 1/60th of a second). The faster shutter speeds let in less light, but capture things moving fast. Be careful not to get too fast of a shutter speed that you don't let enough light in and you get a dark picture instead.
Between these three settings: ISO, Aperture, and Shutter Speed you can get a photo with the correct exposure for what you want to take a picture of.
Try experimenting with different settings, maybe only changing the aperture size to start with, and leaving the rest on automatic, to see what happens to your pictures as you take them. It's a good way to learn to use your camera, so that when you want to have a desired effect for your pictures, you know exactly what to do.
I think this is a good project for me to do to start out the New Year right!